Toronto Blue Jays News

Blue Jays spin their tires in loss to Rays

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Aug 9, 2016; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Tampa Bay Rays second baseman Logan Forsythe (11) celebrates with Tampa Bay Rays third baseman Evan Longoria (3) after hitting a home run during the first inning in a game against the Toronto Blue Jays at Rogers Centre. Mandatory Credit: Nick Turchiaro-USA TODAY Sports
Aug 9, 2016; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Tampa Bay Rays second baseman Logan Forsythe (11) celebrates with Tampa Bay Rays third baseman Evan Longoria (3) after hitting a home run during the first inning in a game against the Toronto Blue Jays at Rogers Centre. Mandatory Credit: Nick Turchiaro-USA TODAY Sports /
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The Toronto Blue Jays had their shots, but let the Tampa Bay Rays run away with a 9-2 win on Tuesday night at the Rogers Centre.

Marco Estrada battled through five innings, needing 113 pitches as he walked four Rays batters. The right-hander allowed three runs, two of which were earned, on seven hits while striking out six. It could have been much worse, too, as Estrada tiptoed his way out of two bases-loaded jams.

Toronto finally broke through in the bottom of the fifth inning against Drew Smyly with the bases loaded as Melvin Upton Jr. brought home Troy Tulowitzki from third. With runners on the corners, Devon Travis kept his hands inside a pitch to guide an RBI single to right field that scored Michael Saunders and brought the Blue Jays within one.

Danny Barnes was first on in relief for the Jays, allowing Kevin Kiermaier to score from first base on an Evan Longoria triple which was followed by a Mikie Mahtook RBI single to push the Rays back out in front 5-2.

The Blue Jays instantly set themselves up for a comeback, loading the bases with none out in the bottom of the inning. Pop-outs from Tulowitzki and Justin Smoak paired with a Saunders strikeout kept the Jays grounded, and it was all downhill from there.

Scott Feldman took over for Barnes but met a worse fate, allowing four earned runs on six hits in his first inning, struggling to miss bats along the way as the Rays’ hits found every hole in the infield. He followed that up with a scoreless frame, however, and struck out three. Brett Cecil handled a clean eighth, striking out one and needing just 10 pitches.

The series finale goes on Wednesday night with J.A. Happ (15-3, 3.09 ERA) going for his 16th win against Blake Snell (3-4, 2.95 ERA). If the Blue Jays run a strict six-man rotation for the remainder of the season, Happ will have eight opportunities to earn the five wins needed to reach 20 while some minor tinkering would give him a ninth start.

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